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Davos 2023

Will China's reopening save the global economy? Davos debates

End of zero-COVID seen as a plus in the short term, but doubts remain

Travelers crowd a railways station in Shanghai ahead of the Lunar New Year holidays, when Chinese will move about the country without COVID-19-related restrictions.   © Reuters

DAVOS, Switzerland -- China's abrupt reversal of its stringent zero-COVID policy and its implications for the global economy produced a mixture of optimism and caution here as participants at the World Economic Forum's annual meeting weighed in on the outlook.

"The fact that China is opening up and retuning to 4%-plus growth really is a strong positive for the global economy," William Ford, chief executive officer at General Atlantic Partners, a New York-based private equity firm, said in a session on Thursday. "I think it is leading the round of optimism this week."

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